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  1. #1

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    Gotta have the dots

    David


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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    Yeah, we all probably started with a Mel Bay chord book. First sheet music I bought in about 1961-62 was "Green Fields" and it had chord diagrams - got me started. Later moved up to 'gazillion' chord dictionary, then learned how to build them on my own and never looked back. But starting out, yeah, they're helpful. I'm sure there are theory freaks who'll disagree but, hey, whatever works and gets you playing.

  4. #3

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    Guitar is such a visual instrument, why wouldn't you want to start out with chord diagrams when you are learning how to play?

    And the chord shapes alone are pretty cool looking when you watch someone playing!

    I started out with Johnny Rector's Chord Encyclopedia and then went on to both of Mickey Baker's books and the rest as they say is history.

    Regards,
    Steven Herron
    Learn To Play Chord Melody Guitar

  5. #4

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    many "guitar books" would not exist without grids...chord chemistry-Greene even some of Howard Roberts books used grids..

    grids are a guitarists friend...now..tabs on the other hand (there is a pick!)

    sorry...
    play well ...
    wolf

  6. #5

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    My only issue with chord diagrams is that they are usually shown with a vertical orientation; I prefer a horizontal approach, and draw my own that way.

    Yes, chord diagrams are a great way to get started. Where would many of us be without Mel Bay et al?
    Best regards, k

  7. #6

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    When I began to play guitar my interest was in the lead solos I was hearing on the radio in the late 60s, so I started by playing single notes and taught myself to play lead guitar first, then discovered a few years later that whatever chord types I wanted to hear just naturally emerged under my fingers (and chords made so much sense after having learned to play melodic lines first).


    This did not seem like an unusual approach to me back then because most instruments only produce single notes, and even the piano is learned by starting with single notes. What continues to seem peculiar to me now is that the guitar is typically taught as a "chords first" instrument.


    There is an asymmetry between learning lines first versus learning chords first. From a composing/improvising perspective the harmonic cloud of chord possibilities around a melodic line is far greater than the harmonic cloud of melodic possibilities around a chord. This harmonic asymmetry is the basis for the recommended choice:


    "Let the melody be your guide"


    That does not mean stick to the melody; it means let the melody be your perspective through which you hear, grasp, and musically evaluate chords, harmony, and rhythm... the multiple different possibilities from which you choose to actually make manifest while playing.
    "Bent my ear to hear the tune and closed my eyes to see."

  8. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by pauln View Post
    most instruments only produce single notes, and even the piano is learned by starting with single notes. What continues to seem peculiar to me now is that the guitar is typically taught as a "chords first" instrument.
    Very good point.

  9. #8

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    I have found for my own quick notes that a standard chord grid to be take more time than I want to spend and often uses more space on a page than I have. I like the quick single line numeric format. e.g. A G7 at the 3rd fret would be shown as 3x343x.

  10. #9

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    I haven't seen any modern ones but certainly in years gone by sheet music usually contained chord diagrams for guitarists.

    Unfortunately these were generally in the open position, only going further up the neck when absolutely necessary, and bore virtually no resemblance to how a reasonably skilled player would actually play them. In fact, if one wanted to play a decent backing to a tune, they were pretty well useless.

    It's only in more advanced tutorials or books like Ted Greene's Chord Chemistry that they began to have a point, being a quick and efficient visual aid as to what to play. Using numerical versions instead wouldn't really be an option.

  11. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by ragman1 View Post
    ... books like Ted Greene's Chord Chemistry ...
    Ted's approach to annotating chord melody using grids was brilliant. Very effective, IMHO.

  12. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by ragman1 View Post
    I haven't seen any modern ones but certainly in years gone by sheet music usually contained chord diagrams for guitarists.

    Unfortunately these were generally in the open position, only going further up the neck when absolutely necessary, and bore virtually no resemblance to how a reasonably skilled player would actually play them. In fact, if one wanted to play a decent backing to a tune, they were pretty well useless.

    It's only in more advanced tutorials or books like Ted Greene's Chord Chemistry that they began to have a point, being a quick and efficient visual aid as to what to play. Using numerical versions instead wouldn't really be an option.
    I couldn't agree more. Most grids are absolutely useless, showing the chords as cowboy open chords no one would actually play in that context. If authors used something as thoughtful or powerful as Ted Greene's grids, tab would probably disappear.

  13. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by rlrhett View Post
    If authors used something as thoughtful or powerful as Ted Greene's grids, tab would probably disappear.
    And book sales would probably go right d-o-w-n :-)

    Very complicated was Ted

  14. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by rlrhett View Post
    I couldn't agree more. tab would probably disappear.
    a tab free world..pity the metal players
    play well ...
    wolf

  15. #14

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    Almir Chediak's books on Brazilian tunes include the composer's own fingerings, on grids, where applicable.

    They go up the neck, as necessary.

    The grids are very helpful for learning this style even for the advanced player. The use of open strings in novel ways would make notes on a staff be very difficult to use.

  16. #15

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    rpjazzguitar -

    I'd go with that. The real Brazilian bossa players use all kinds of chords. Maybe they know the names, maybe not, but the diagrams do help immensely. They tend to do them in the right keys too.

    This site's good. Click on a letter for the song title. 'Garota de Ipanema', for example, and... Db. Pass the mouse over the chord name and... chord grid.

    Bossa Nova Guitar Chords, Lessons, Songs, Tabs, Video Instructions

  17. #16

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    Classic sketch....